As part of a series of ongoing investigations targeting the smuggling of rhino horns, ENV has had the opportunity to interview a number of rhino horn smugglers and their families. The following testimonial gives a “behind the scenes” look at the smuggling process, and according to the smuggler, highlights the difficulties that the government faces as it seeks to crack down on smuggling.
ENV has documented a total of 280 violations involving tigers and tiger products since 2006. These include 120 incidents of advertising and selling tiger bone TCM, teeth, claws, and products, 55 possession cases including both live tigers and trophy tigers, and 107 violations involving smuggling and trade of tigers, which includes keeping, transporting, and processing tigers and their parts.
In January 2014, ENV carried out a review of criminal prosecutions which involved rare and endangered wildlife species that are currently listed in Group 1B of Decree 32/2006 and are fully protected under Vietnamese law. The review was carried out to evaluate the outcome of these criminal cases and assess whether punishment that was applied for serious criminal offenses involving wildlife may be effective in deterring criminal behavior and meeting the full protection needs of Vietnam’s most critically endangered species as intended under the law.
ENV’s latest bear bile use analysis, released May 2012, indicates that more than 30% of people surveyed in rural communities, mostly in the northern region of Vietnam, have consumed bear bile. Comparing the findings to an earlier ENV study of urban bear bile users, attitudes and behaviors were quite similar between users in rural and urban centers.
This updated version of the “Tortoise and Freshwater Turtle Identification Resource” (in Vietnamese language) was released in April 2012 by ENV, Cuc Phuong Turtle Conservation Center (TCC) and the Asian Turtle Program (ATP). It includes information on 25 species of tortoise and freshwater turtle in Vietnam that are protected by Vietnamese and international laws (full resource is in Vietnamese language).